Dr. Olivia Tucker



Assistant Professor



Music Education


Describe your research in about 200 words.

I am fascinated by how music education freshmen enter college as students and immediately begin developing teacher identities. I study how teacher identity is shaped by personal experiences both in and out of the classroom. In addition, I am curious about the role of teacher agency in education reform. I investigate how teachers make decisions in their music classrooms.


What’s the most interesting thing you have learned from a student?

One of my most impactful moments in teaching was when I realized that a student did not want me to constantly praise her – she wanted authenticity. She knew when she needed to improve and work harder to learn or achieve something, and she wanted me to acknowledge her room for growth. Because of that experience, I now seek to both challenge and encourage all of my students and to provide them with neutral feedback about their performance and learning outcomes. They can then use my feedback as information for further learning, and our rapport is strengthened by “being real” with each other.